My last post received more responses than all the previous ones combined. Maybe the "negative" approach is already having the desired effect! While I really appreciate your feedback and want to thank everyone who responded, it seems that I may not have explained what I was trying to say very well when I talked of a "negative vs positive", approach. I'll try to clarify by way of analogy.
I suspect that, prior to his famous ride, Paul Revere talked often with his friends and neighbors about the imminence of a British invasion and encouraged them to prepare, all the while hoping that it would not happen. That would be an example of a "positive" approach. However, when the imminent became a reality, he rode out with a message from the "negative" perspective, "The British are HERE!"
In the past I have been "positive" in trying to point out that the end of America is coming if we don't act, thereby trying to encourage us and help prevent that from happening. I will now try to communicate the negative reality that, "The end has come. It is over." So, you might ask, if I believe that to be the case, why am I still writing? What's the use? The answer to that question is found in the distinction between resuscitation and resurrection.
As long as there is still life in a body, there is hope that a person can be resuscitated, which can always be attributed to natural causes. But, when one is stone cold dead, only supernatural intervention, i.e., resurrection, can revive them. If we maintain that America is only sick we are saying that by human effort we can revive her. If we face the reality that she is dead, we must cry out to God for resurrection.
The Good News is that the God of the resurrection is alive and well. It was He who established, prospered and sustained America, and it is He and only He who can restore her. Even as, when it seemed that all was lost, He raised Jesus from the dead, so He can do for America.
When Jesus came to visit Mary and Martha, the sisters of Lazarus, they wept and said, "Lord, if you had been here our brother would not have died." The people were grumbling a similar sentiment. They thought that all hope was lost.
They were right, in that He could have healed him of his illness. But they did not consider that Jesus might have had a greater purpose in allowing Lazarus to die. They soon discovered what Jesus had known all along; He allowed Lazarus to die so He could raise him from the dead to the glory of God.
We tend to be like those people in that we lament that God has not prevented the death of America and that there is now no hope. But, what if it's because He wants to glorify His name and demonstrate His power by raising her again? I know this is possible so I choose to go forward believing it is so and working to see it happen.
In the grieving process, no healing can come as long as we are in denial of the reality that our loved one is dead. So, for the foreseeable future, I will be using this space to lay out why I believe it is that America is not sick but dead and, therefore, not in need of resuscitation but of resurrection. In so doing I pray this "negative" approach will help bring about a "positive" and glorious result.
Richard Cochran, President
Macon County Patriots
February 26, 2012
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